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‘Make It Count’ Lesson Plan

This ESL lesson plan is designed around an inspiring short film titled Make It Count and the themes of life, inspiration and travel. Students put words into order to create quotations, discuss quotations, watch a short film, speak and write.

Check out the lesson plan

This ESL lesson plan is designed around an inspiring short film titled Make It Count and the themes of life, inspiration and travel. Students put words into order to create quotations, discuss quotations, watch a short film, speak and write.



Language level: Intermediate (B1) – Upper Intermediate (B2)

Learner type: Teens and adults

Time: 90 minutes

Activity: Putting words in order to create quotations, discussing quotations, watching a short film, speaking and writing

Topic: Life, inspiration and travel

Language: quotations, word order and narrative tenses



Watch the film.


Check out the lesson plan


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We hope you enjoy this ESL lesson.


Kieran and the Film English Team

Check out the lesson plan


20 comments on “‘Make It Count’ Lesson Plan

  1. Hi, Kieran!

    Looks like a great lesson and I will definitely use it soon.

    I just wanted to say that “quote” is a verb. In spite of popular usage, a statement that one “quotes” is a “quotation”. Sorry – just one of my pet peeves.

    Thanks for your great work!


    1. Hi Maura,
      Thanks a lot for commenting and your kind words about the site. I’m aware that 2quote” is the verb and “quotation” the noun, but I did a Google search before writing the lesson and “famous quotations” came up with 700,000 results while “famous quotes” came up with 7 million results so I decided to go with “quotes”.
      All the best,

      1. I was afraid that was going to be your answer.

        It’s hard for grammar nerds like me 😉

        1. I agree with you, Maura. I think “quotation” is the right word, but I thought I’d use “quote” as I relly like the site Brainy Quotes which has loads of cool quotes and there were more results on Google. By the way, you’re NOT a nerd 🙂

    2. I love this video so when I saw the lesson here I jumped at the chance to use it – and it worked beautifully!

      I used this lesson with various advanced groups (B2-C1 levels). The powerpoint is a really nice way to get the students thinking about the quotes, although weaker/smaller groups needed a lot more help to get the words in order.

      The video is great and really uplifting and all of my students enjoyed it and we managed to create great discussions about the video and the meaning of the quotes.

      It was great to get my teenager to start thinking about travelling (some of whm hadn’t even thought about where they’d like to go before!) and they created some great ‘around the world’ trips.

      HINT – there is a website called which specialises in round the world travel. If you follow the link to ‘Indie’ it will take you to a world map where all you need to do is type in the name of your destination and your route will be automatically shown.

      1. Hi John,
        Thanks for taking the time to comment. I’m really happy you and your students enjoyed the lesson so much. Thanks a lot for the heads up about the travel site.
        All the best,

  2. An inspiring lesson plan. Thank you. I’ll try it with my students. I think I’ll add one more exercise. To brainstorm in groups and come up with the words that count in their lives and make up their own quotes.

    1. Hi Aliona,
      Thanks a lot for commenting. Your brainstorming stage sounds really good. Please let me know how the lesson goes.
      All the best,

      1. I will. The classes are on Wednesday. 🙂

        1. Well, I tried this. And we were playing with these quotations for two classes. Discussed, invented new ones. In the end they posted their own quotations in our class group and I assigned them to “like” those they liked the most. The competition is still on! They are coming up with new ones!

          Everything went great. Thanks a lot!

          1. Wow! The way you¡ve used the materials sounds great, Aliona.
            All the best,

  3. Dear K,

    I love this lesson. Travel always acts as a springboard for productive chitter-chatter, and this video facilitates this.



    1. Hi Mike,
      I’m really happy you like the lesson. Yes, travel’s always a great prompt for speaking. Let me know how it goes if you use it with your students.
      All the best,

  4. Incoming link: #ELTchat » #ELTchat summary – Exploiting Short Film and Video Clips

  5. Incoming link: #ELTchat » Exploiting Short Film and Video Clips – An #ELTchat summary 29/03/2013

  6. fantastic lesson and students absolutely loved the video. Many thanks

    1. Hi Irene,
      Thanks very much for the kind comments which I really appreciate 🙂
      All the best,

  7. Great lesson, great quotes (yes, I will use “quote” also), and great film!! This is the perfect extension to the Life 6 / Unit 5 The Writer’s Journey (Cengage Learning) I am using in my advanced ESL class at a community-based program in Washington, DC. We have been discussing the impact of text and image combinations. The language lesson using the quotations is engaging even before watching the film. Thank you for being a terrific, multimodal resource.
    p.s. I bought your book from Amazon US – waiting for it to arrive.

    1. Hi Erin,
      Thank you for your fantastic feedback and for buying my book; I hope you find it useful.
      All the best,

  8. Incoming link: Film English | Pearltrees

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